Conviction: Movie Review
Cast: Hilary Swank, Sam Rockwell, Minnie Driver, Peter
Gallagher, Melissa Leo
Director: Tony Goldwyn
Hilary Swank stars as Betty Ann Waters in this film which is based on a true
Waters is a drop out who's formed a close bond with her brother Kenny (the
ever great Sam Rockwell) as they've been shunted from foster home to foster home
in their childhoods.
But when Kenny's arrested for murder by Nancy Taylor (Melissa Leo)- and
convicted two years after the crime's been committed- Betty Ann feels her life
ripped from her.
So, she resolves to put herself through law school with the sole aim of doing
whatever it takes to exonerate her brother.
Spurred on by her friend Abra (Driver), Waters contacts the Innocence
project, determined to use DNA evidence to get her brother out of jail, despite
Conviction would work better as a TV movie, rather than a big screen
All involved give great performances and it seems unfair to diminish the true
story nature of this, but the problem is the film offers nothing new or original
to many other similar stories of their ilk.
Granted, it's made perfectly adequately and sees the main duo of Swank and
Rockwell acquit themselves decently - but the emotional core of the film appears
to have gone AWOL from script to screen.
The moments where you'd expect your heart to leap are curiously flat and
presented in a very matter of fact way; and some of the most potentially
engaging drama (Waters' marriage falling apart being one) takes place off
screen, robbing you of any real involvement. That and the fact that it's not
explored that this woman's spent her entire life trying to save her brother and
it's cost her everything and you just feel nothing but detachment from what
transpires in front of you.
At the end of the day, Conviction has plenty of its own title in it, but it
really could have done with a little more courage of its convictions to have
soared above the usual fare.